You are what you eat is a common expression, but did you know that what you put in your mouth every day affects how fast and how much you’ll age? We take a look at the latest buzz, and what to do to tackle aging inside and out.
Spice it up
Not only do spices add flavour and zest to your dish, but they can also help fight the effects of Father Time, says Shauna Lindzon a registered dietitian in Toronto. Tumeric, which contains a potential cancer-fighting compound called curcumin, is commonly used in curries and is also being utilized in many skincare products to help reduce inflammation and damage by free radicals. If you’re feeling like something sweet add some cinnamon to your dish. This spice is currently being studied in regards to its ability to control blood sugar and may help those with diabetes.
Choose the berry best
Instead of eating an apple a day, try a handful of blueberries. This berry along with others has anthocyanins – flavonoid pigments that are key antioxidants in battling cell breakdown all over, says Lindzon. The darker and more seeds the berries have the better. Good choices include strawberries, blackberries and blueberries. Blueberries are best when wild as they usually have more health properties.
Add Omega 3
While you can take supplements, eating fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, herring, trout, and sardines is the best way to get Omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3 fats play a vital role in the health of cell membranes. If you have brittle nails or dry skin, watch out because you may be lacking Omega 3 in your diet. They control inflammation in the joints, bloodstream and tissues. Your body can’t produce these on your own so try eating a minimum of two servings a week of fatty fish, in order to improve your cardiovascular and brain health, all while decreasing your risk of heart and stroke, says Lindzon.
Don’t completely avoid fat in your diet if you want to look your best. The skin is made up of a phospholipid bilayer so you need fat in your diet in order to maintain healthy cells, says Lindzon. Just make sure it’s the right kind of fat. Essential fatty acids such as Omega 3s and monounsaturated fats are what you’re looking for. Find these in walnuts, ground flaxseed, pumpkin seeds, avocados, and sunflower seeds. Your body also needs these good fats to absorb vitamins so fear fat no longer!
If you’re not a big fan of dairy you could be missing out on calcium, an essential mineral for bone development and maintenance. If your bone density is low you’ll increase your risk of osteoporosis and bone degenerative diseases and speed up the aging process, says Lindzon. Some dairy alternatives are tofu, fortified soy, almond and rice beverages, green leafy vegetables, almonds and fortified orange juices. Combine your calcium with Vitamin D (1,000 IUDs per day) to help absorption of both.